PL EN
Evaluation of Traditional Container Glass Recycling Systems Against Selected Environmental Impact Criteria Using the LCA Method
 
More details
Hide details
1
Siedlce University of Natural Sciences and Humanities, Research Team of Quantitative Methods and Spatial Management, ul. B. Prusa 14, 08-110 Siedlce, Poland
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Bartosz Marek Zegardło   

Siedlce University of Natural Sciences and Humanities, Research Team of Quantitative Methods and Spatial Management, ul. B. Prusa 14, 08-110 Siedlce, Poland
Publication date: 2021-06-06
 
J. Ecol. Eng. 2021; 22(6):20–25
 
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
The research results presented in this article are an answer to controversial theses questioning the validity of traditional recycling methods. Voices of scientific circles appearing recently indicate that irrational waste management and too energy-intensive recycling of selected products brings more harm to the environment than benefits. This paper is devoted to the assessment of selected environmental effects of traditional recycling processes for container glass. The environmental impact of collection, segregation, transport and remelting of glass waste was analysed using the LCA (Life Cycle Assessment) method and available databases. The environmental impact of the processes described was assessed in terms of selected criteria: climate change, energy depletion, air emissions, toxicity and depletion of natural resources. Two methods were used for the calculations: the method of the Institute of Environmental Engineering of Leiden University - CML and the Ecological Scarcity Method (ESM). The calculations were carried out for an example city located in eastern Poland. The study showed that, compared with purely natural glass production, the production of recyclates was more favourable in terms of all the above-mentioned factors. Additional calculations made it possible to estimate the waste transport distance, for which the environmental impact of transporting recyclate to the glassworks made the glass recycling process by re-melting less favourable than the production of packaging from natural resources.